HomeBlogsjhowser's blogSpiralmouth Lends A Cappella Pizzazz to Crash Bandicoot Video Games

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I said, I think thats a great idea, asked the band and they said, We think thats a great idea, and the rest is rock history, Mann said.

To create the score for a video game, first Spiralmouth consults the games developers to get their ideas for the direction the music should go for the various levels of the game. Then Mann and fellow band member Becky Kneubuhl set about writing the basic melodies. The games need about an hour and a half worth of music, including music for in-game movies, which Mann compared to scoring animation.

When all six Spiralmouth members get together to record the music, they produce and mix as they go, Mann said. Finished segments are sent to the developers, who sometimes require the music to be tweaked to better match the picture in the game.

Needless to say, it is a very long process from composition to delivery, Mann said.

Kneubuhl said she really enjoyed how Vivendi Universal gave Spiralmouth a few stylistic parameters but then let them do whatever they wantedand the weirder the better.

That's an unusual situation when working with producers for TV or other visual media, so we were really grateful to have that much creative freedom and not have every other note micro-managed, Kneubuhl said.

The goal was to be as quirky and funny as possible without being repetitive, she said. To meet that challenge, the band spent many hours brainstorming musical ideas for the game.

[It] basically meant a lot of sitting around a microphone acting strange, she said.

Spiralmouths music has garnered praise from both video game reviewers and fans. Vivendi Universal seems to be quite happy with it as well since it has hired the group for two games already with another one on the way, Mann said.

Theres something about the general out-ness of an a cappella sound that seems to match the particular projects weve worked on well. Im always proud to play people what weve done for the games, and working with Spiralmouth is a real pleasure, he said.